Breaking Ground and Groundbreaking!

Dana Stabenow wields the shovel!
Scott Bauer laying a cabin foundation.

On May 4, a bright and windy day, Storyknife progressed into a new phase – the Building Phase!

Among a crowd of supporters, Dana Stabenow, Storyknife founder, put her decorated shovel into the dirt and broke ground for Storyknife. There was champagne and cupcakes. The first Storyknife fellow, Kim Steutermann Rogers, spoke about the meaning of a writer’s residency in her life and in the lives of all women writers. We were honored to hear also from Nancy Nordhoff, founder of Hedgebrook, the seminal women’s writing residency in the United States. Dana spoke about Storyknife being a dream come true, now fourteen years in the making. 

And what a wonderful dream it is, a place where women have the opportunity to write without distraction, form a supportive community, and are told at every possible opportunity that their writing is important. 

Women writers still struggle for the same representation as male writers. For example, in the last twenty years, Pulitzer Prizes in fiction, nonfiction, and poetry have only been awarded to women 28% of the time. If the Pulitzer is the considered the top of the prestige ladder, it’s distressing that women are so poorly represented. 

I hope that you are as committed to elevating women’s voices as we are here at Storyknife. As we build, there will be a great number of opportunities for you to be involved. It is my hope that you will reach out to others that you know would be interested in supporting Storyknife as well as attending a residency here. As Storyknife grows, you can help us grow our community. Feel free to forward this newsletter, or share our website ( or Facebook page.

Shovels in, walls up, women writing!

Erin Coughlin Hollowell
Executive Director of Storyknife

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